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What Social Media Platforms And Search Engines Know About You

The Facebook scandal involving the harvesting of data from tens of millions of users has raised a lot of questions about social media and search engines.

As Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies before the US Congress this week on protecting user data, here is a primer on what they know about you:

Social media

Facebook, which has more than two billion users, has access to everything you do on the site: the photos and videos you post, your comments, your 'likes,' anything you share or consult, the identity of your friends and any other users you interact with, your location and other information.

Ditto for Instagram and WhatsApp, which are owned by Facebook, and for Snapchat and Twitter. A user can control some sharing of their Facebook data with privacy settings and the ad preferences page.

What it sells: Facebook insists it does not sell advertisers personally identifiable information or even aggregate data. What it provides an advertiser with is the ability to...(continued)

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